PU 'sealed' to stop IJT's book fair | PU rejects Jamiat medical report
No means no!: PU 'sealed' for 4 days to stop IJT's book fair
Lahore, May 12, 2008: The Punjab University (PU) will remain closed from Monday (today) to
Thursday to stop the Islami Jamiat Talaba (IJT) from holding its annual book
Moreover, the PU vice-chancellor (VC) has instructed the PU Hall
Council chairman to evict all the male boarders, except foreign students, from
the PU hostels for these four days.
According to the information
received, the PU administration has deployed 400 police personnel on the campus
following reports of presence of 'outsiders' at PU hostels. The IJT had
previously announced that it would organise the three-day book fair by all
PU Public Relations Officer Shabbir Sarwer said on
Sunday that the decision to close the university was made at a special meeting.
He said that the PU administration had also sought help from police to stop the
book fair. He said that security would be deployed at all the entrance gates of
the university, and no outsider would be allowed inside. He said that the list
of illegal 'elements' belonging to the IJT would be handed over to the police.
"A late night operation is expected at the hostels to arrest those activists,"
he said. He said that all the deans of the PU had been instructed to hold
make-up classes after Thursday to cover the lost time.
Earlier on Sunday, a number of PU students belonging to the University Students
Federation (USF) announced to hold a protest in front of the PU VC's office on
Monday against the holding of the book fair. The USF activists said that the
protest was to make the VC realise that granting permission to the IJT to
organise the fair would create problems in the university, because other
political groups were opposing it. On the other hand, PU IJT Nazim Rana Zahid
said that the entire country would be in turmoil if the book fair was
USF spokesman Ahsan Chaudhry said that the
federation had already warned the PU administration that the university's
functioning would be disturbed by the book fair. "The IJT wants to hold the book
fair to show its power, but we will never allow this," he said, adding that the
IJT would not be allowed to set up its hold in the PU again. He said that
students were not against the book fair, as it was for the welfare of the
students, but here the situation was different. "We will suggest to the PU
administration on Monday that it should only arrange the book fair if it can be
positive for the varsity," he added.
Warning: PU IJT Nazim Rana Zahid
said that the union did not have any political purpose behind the book fair.
However, in a press statement issued on Sunday, he denounced the university
administration for declaring the book fair illegal and immoral. "Those who are
trying to thwart this event are themselves illegal," he said, adding that after
the restoration of the student unions, the PU syndicate's decision regarding the
book fair had no legal standing.
He said that the book fair would
definitely be held on May 13, 14 and 15, and that if anyone tried to spoil the
event, peace in the country would be disturbed. "The chancellor and PU VC will
be responsible for whatever happens afterwards," he warned. Daily Times
PU rejects Jamiat medical report
Lahore: Punjab University Resident Officer-I Prof Dr Bashir
Ahmad, also member of the varsity's medical committee, has rejected blood
diagnostic test results provided by the Islami Jamiat Tulaba during its two-day
medical camp on the New Campus.
Prof Ahmad said the IJT had given the
grim health data just to panic the university. "The university does not
recognise these test results," he added.
The IJT organised a free medical
camp this week, where some 2,000 university students' blood was scanned. The IJT
reports that the medical camp managed by the King Edward Medical University and
Allama Iqbal Medical College doctors and students detected one student HIV
positive, 96 Hepatitis-C positive and 43 carriers of Hepatitis A and
According to a gender-wise break-up, the IJT said a boy was detected
HIV positive. Of 43 Hepatitis-C positive students, there were 17 female and 26
male students. Similarly, there were 33 girls and 63 boys detected as Hepatitis
A and B carriers.
The IJT said the blood tests were conducted by
Al-Khidmat Foundation and Surraya Azeem Trust Hospital technicians.
RO-I said that the HIV, Hepatitis C and Hepatitis B ailments were blood borne
and had nothing to do with the consumption of water.
He said only
Hepatitis A was water-borne disease, adding that there were no water tanks but
the fresh water was supplied to electric coolers directly from water reservoir,
800 feet down the earth.
He said the university's underground water test
results showed it was safe by any quality standards.
In hostels, he said,
the university had installed filters, which were being replaced periodically. He
also said that university's chief medical officer also examine the water samples
from hostels on monthly basis.
Prof Ahmad also said that the university
had already made it mandatory to conduct HIV and Hepatitis tests of all students
at the time of their admission to university hostels. Dawn
PU canteens teeming with child workers
Lahore: A number of children between the age of five and 10 work in canteens and
hotels of the Punjab University in violation of the Employment of Children Act,
There are at least 20 male hostels and 65 departments at PU, each
with it own canteen. In addition, there are two large fruit shops, guest hotels
and barbershops on the premises, many of which employ children who work all day
for low wages. The majority of the children employed are from villages, whose
parents send them to work with the shopkeepers in exchange for payment.
The PU administration says that several times action has been taken
against these shopkeepers, but they continue to employ
According to the Employment of Children Act of 1991, it is
illegal to employ children below the age of 14 for physical labour. Child labour
is a countrywide problem.
Several children working at these shops said that they worked from morning until night, but did not know about
their wages because the money was sent directly to their parents.
Perwaiz, a seven-year-old child from Kasur working at a PU canteen, said
he had been working there for the last three years. "I have never been to school
and none of my family members are educated. The owner of the canteen where I
work is also from my village. He only gives me food, which is prepared at the
canteen. He beats me every now and then on very trifling matters," he
Amir (5), another child employee from Daska, said he received Rs 80
a day for his work, cooking from morning until evening. He said he was allowed
only a one-hour break during the day. "We don't have holidays. We go home when
the university is closed due to holidays or on special occasions like Eid. My
father also works here and my employer directly gives him my salary," he
A canteen owner who asked not to be named said that he did not know
it was a crime to hire a child under the age of 14. "Children are good employees
because they are quick to carry out orders," he said, adding that he gave
sufficient time to children to rest.
PU Hall Council Chairman Dr Saeed
Ahmed Nagra said parents sent their children to work because they lived in
poverty. "The university administration has several times taken action against
the canteen owners for hiring children, but they again bring them for work," he
Society for the Protection of the Rights of the Child (SPARC)
Regional Manager Rashid Aziz said that there was a need to raise awareness among
people on the issue. "It is a crime to put a child to labour so legal action
should the violators," he said. Daily Times
"university of the punjab is sealed for four days.12,13,14 and 15 may due some circumstances. Police will rade in hostels about illegel people.because of this legal are suffering from problems........"
City, Country: lahore, Pakistan
"In an already ceasing ambiance of extra-curricular activities,the arrangement of a Book Fair should have been supported with all sort of facilities, but on the contrary, the PU administration is trying its utmost to stop it from taking place. Now,when student unions are restored, the IJT has a legal right to organise such events. There is no sense in opposing such positive activities."
City, Country: Karchi, Pakistan